There is nothing I love more than having a big bunch of people I love over for food and drink—especially when it’s a holiday and there’s a grill involved and we might be going out on someone’s boat later.
With that in mind I’ve put together this celebratory Fourth of July weekend menu, inspired by Southern food I grew up eating and the coastal city of Charleston where I live.
It’ll feed 6 to 8 people to satisfaction, but it’s deceptively healthy. It’s also portable and premake-able.
Behold, I give you:
- Grilled Whole Rosemary Chicken
- Shrimp Ceviche with Tomato & Avocado
- Mango Bean Salad (inspired by The Cooking Diva)
- Cinnamon-Orange Fruit Salad
And a very special dessert: Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry.
You can download the entire menu with grocery list in PDF form at the bottom of the page.
Whole Grilled Rosemary Chicken
- juice of 3 limes
- 2 Tbsp fresh chopped rosemary 5–6 sprigs
- 4 spring onions
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 Tbsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1 2 –3 lb. chicken
- 1 cup pineapple juice
- 1 cup beer I used an IPA.
- Juice limes and chop rosemary and onions. Combine with olive oil, salt, and pepper in a gallon ziplock bag. Add chicken to the bag, seal, and turn to coat thoroughly. Marinate 24 hours or overnight.
- When ready to grill chicken, turn on 1–2 grill burners on medium-high heat so that half of the grill is unlit. Close grill lid and heat until internal temperature is approximately 350 degrees. Mix beer and pineapple juice in a 16-oz. mason or jam jar and place on the unlit part of the grill. (It won’t break, my husband assured me, and he was right.) Remove chicken from marinade, reserving marinade for Shrimp Ceviche, and fit cavity down over the jar, propping on the legs as need be. Close the grill and cook 75 to 90 minutes, until juices run clear and internal temperature is 180 in the thigh and 160 in the breast.
- When chicken is done, lift carefully off jar with tongs and remove to a plate. Cover with foil and allow to rest 10 minutes.
Quick Shrimp Ceviche with Avocado & Tomato
- 1 lb. peeled & deveined shrimp
- leftover marinade from Grilled Whole Rosemary Chicken
- juice of 2 limes
- juice of 1 lemon
- 1/2 pkg. grape tomatoes
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- hot sauce to taste I used 1 Tbsp serrano lime sauce.
- Marinate shrimp for 1 hour in leftover Grilled Whole Rosemary Chicken marinade (don't worry; you'll be cooking the shrimp). Meanwhile, juice limes and lemon, and chop tomatoes, avocado, and cilantro.
- Add shrimp, marinade, and any cooking juices from Grilled Whole Rosemary Chicken to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Simmer 5 minutes or until all shrimp is pink. Meanwhile, prepare another saucepan or metal bowl with 12 ice cubes. Pour shrimp and marinade over ice to cool, adding more ice as necessary to chill.
- Drain shrimp, discarding marinade, and add to a serving bowl with tomato, avocado, cilantro. Add oregano, lemon and lime juice, Worcestershire, and hot sauce if using, and mix. Serve right away or refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.
Mango Bean Salad
- 1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
- 1 can of navy beans
- 1 mango
- 1/2 pkg. grape tomatoes
- 1/2 cup diced red onion
- 1 large green bell pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/2 cup tomatillo salsa
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 avocado
- Toast pumpkin seeds and drain beans. Peel and chop mango; cut tomatoes in half. Dice onion, pepper, and cilantro and juice lime.
- Toss all ingredients except pumpkin seeds and avocado in a large bowl and marinate 10 minutes to 1 hour. Chop and mix in avocado and top with pumpkin seeds before serving.
Cinnamon Orange Fruit Salad
- 2 apples
- 1 lb. grapes
- 1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt*
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- zest of 1 orange
- brown sugar to taste optional
- Chop apples into bite-size pieces and cut grapes in half. Mix with yogurt and cinnamon. Zest orange over top and mix, then sprinkle with brown sugar as desired.
- *Variation: Instead of vanilla yogurt, you can use plain Greek yogurt and 1/4 cup of honey.
Blueberry Pie with Lemon Pastry
- 1 lemon
- 4 4-6 Tbsp ice cold water
- 2 cups sifted whole-wheat flour plus flour for rolling
- 1 tsp salt
- 2/3 cup cold butter
- Lemon Pastry above
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- Zest and juice lemon. Put 2 Tbsp lemon juice and water into separate small bowls and put in the freezer. Sift flour and measure out into a medium bowl; mix flour and salt and then whisk in lemon zest.
- Cut in butter and mix by hand or with a pastry mixer until crumbly. Mix lemon juice with 4 Tbsp water and sprinkle over dry ingredients; mix and roll into a ball, adding 1–2 Tbsp water as needed to get dough to stick together.
- Divide dough into 2 balls. Roll each out on a floured surface to form a circle. Fit one half into a 9-inch pie plate and save the other for topping the pie.
- Line a 9-inch pie plate with half the rolled-out Lemon Pastry. If using fresh blueberries, rinse and pick out any stems or bad berries. Drain and pat dry.
- Preheat oven to 425. In a large bowl whisk together sugar, flour, salt, cinnamon, lemon juice, and zest. Add blueberries and mix thoroughly to coat.
- Fill pie crust with blueberry mixture. Cut remaining pastry into strips; lay half strips across the pie and then interweave the other strips going the other direction. Bake 30–40 minutes, or until crust is golden and berries are bubbling. Serve as is or with vanilla ice cream.